Re "Boycott Israel," Opinion, Aug. 20
The Op-Ed article by Neve Gordon is a statement on why Israel should not be boycotted. Gordon, a leftist in Israel, has complete rights of free speech. Israel is the only true democracy in the Middle East. Not only does he have the right to ask for a boycott, so can all the Israeli Arabs who live as free people in Israel as well.
But one thing that Gordon does not consider is that boycotting Israel is a detriment to the Israeli people as well as to the Palestinians, some of whom work in Israel to support their families.
The call for a boycott is unjustified and undignified from someone who teaches and has access to the media.
Allyson Rowen Taylor
Gordon expresses the frustration many feel at the ongoing Israeli-Palestinian conflict -- including many of us who care deeply about Israel's future.
The answer, however, isn't to divest, boycott or sanction -- steps that deepen Israel's sense of isolation and increase the antagonism that surrounds the issue. Instead, let's invest our energy in a positive campaign to support what is likely to be a serious push by President Obama to achieve a two-state solution and broader regional peace.
Ideologues on all sides will oppose the president. Let all of goodwill who seek a just, two-state resolution rally to support him.
The writer is the executive director of J Street, a Jewish group in Washington that advocates for Mideast peace.
We Diaspora Jews are embarrassed by corrupt rabbis and Jewish crooks, as American Christians are embarrassed by corrupt members of their clergy, and we know that the state of Israel's actions have increased global anti-Semitism.
However, we all know that our U.S. democracy will survive as a nation. Gordon's very courageous Op-Ed article indicates that he is not so sure of the fate of his nation.
In my opinion, the problem is that the state of Israel calls itself a democracy. It does not qualify because all of its citizens are not equal in the eyes of the government. Arabs are second-class citizens. Religious Zionists and government-supported settlements are blocking a two-state solution with the Palestinians.
The state of Israel is a de facto Jewish republic, which is not what Gordon wants for his children.
Martin J. Weisman
This man cares about Israel, and his article is something that should be read by every American and Israeli. There will be no peace until Israel grants Palestinians equal rights.
Only a Jewish Israeli citizen has the guts to speak his mind on the boycott issue. Anyone else supporting this is labeled anti-Semitic. I am pleased that The Times printed this Op-Ed article.
Boycotting Israel is unbalanced and morally unjust.
The policy effectively holds Israel solely accountable for the Palestinian-Israeli conflict. It ignores the deliberate cruelty and immorality of Palestinian terror, the failure of Arab states (with the notable exceptions of Egypt and Jordan) to recognize Israel's legitimacy and rightful place in the region, and the fact that terrorists and their sponsors who are bent on Israel's destruction are the primary obstacles to peace.
The peace process will only succeed when both Israelis and Palestinians feel safe and secure.
The author correctly notes that a boycott will make my fellow Israeli citizens feel singled out and persecuted as Jews. This strategy will only undermine Israel's sense of security and prove counterproductive to finding a just and lasting peace.
The writer is a representative of the American Jewish Committee.
Gordon concedes that "the Israel peace camp has gradually dwindled so that today it is almost nonexistent."
In free and open democratic debate, Gordon and those who agree with him have failed to convince the Israeli people that their proposals will bring peace and an end to the almost 90-year war by the Arabs against the Jews in Palestine. There is no logical necessity to assume that Gordon is sincere simply because he lives in Israel with his family. But assuming he is sincere, there is absolutely no reason to believe he possesses godlike infallibility.
Gordon has always been quixotic, anti-Israel, anti-Jewish and now, anti-common sense.
Boycotting his own country is clearly an extreme and bizarre position for his bizarrely held views, and both are problematic for his neighbors and co-religionists.